What Is Bitly?

Bitly is a powerful Link Management Platform that lets you harness the power of the link by allowing you to easily shorten, share, manage and analyze your links.

They empower businesses to create trustedpowerful recognizable links that maximize the impact of every digital initiative.

When you optimize links with our link management platform, you can measure each touchpoint in one place, making it easy to build for the needs of your customers and internal teams alike.

Signing Up

It is free to sign up for a Bitly account. You can sign up using your email address, Facebook account or Twitter account.

You can sign up on the homepage of Bitly, in the upper right-hand corner of your screen:

When you shorten a link with Bitly, you are redirecting a click from Bitly to the destination URL. We issue a “301 redirect”: a technique for making a webpage available under many URLs.

A 301 redirect is the most efficient and search engine-friendly method for webpage redirection. Because Bitly doesn’t re-use or modify links, we consider our redirects to be permanent.

Bitly’s dashboard gives you a high-level overview of your top links and activity.

The Dashboard
You can access the dashboard from the first menu navigation dropdown at the top of the page.

It allows you to set a date range, export data, and drill down to specific details as you navigate the page. All the following metrics are displayed for the group you’ve selected in the upper right corner of the page, after the CREATE button.

  1. TOTAL CLICKSClicks all your short links have received.
    BITLINKS CREATED – Links you and your team members have shortened.
  2. TOTAL UNIQUES – Unique visitors who have clicked your short links. This is based on standard browser cookie identification.
    CLICKS PER UNIQUE – Clicks per each unique visitor.
  3. ORGANIC SHARE CLICKS – Clicks generated by short links created outside of your Bitly account. For example, a link shortened by an influencer or a follower of your brand.
    ORGANIC SHARE LINKS – Links shortened in Bitly, but outside of your account.
  4. Date range selector – A calendar selector to enter a date range for the dashboard metrics.
    EXPORT – Exports the metrics above into a CSV file.
  5. TOP BITLINKS – The most-clicked short links that have been created by your Bitly account.
  6. ORGANIC SHARE TOP CONTENT – The most-clicked short links created in Bitly by people outside of your account.
  7. TOP REFERRERS – The top referrers generating clicks to your Bitly link traffic.
  8. TOP LOCATIONS – The top countries generating clicks to your Bitly short links.

Tracking Domains

tracking domain is the “long domain” owned and controlled by you, for which we will report all click traffic from all Bitly users. All click traffic on your tracking domain, including clicks on links that were created by other Bitly users, will appear in your dashboard.

For example, the tracking domain for The New York Times is “”, and the tracking domain for Tech Crunch is “”. 

Keep in mind that a tracking domain cannot be the same as your custom short domain.

You must have FTP access (File Transfer Protocol) to your tracking domain. Some sites, for example,, allow you to purchase a domain but they do not give FTP access to users.


In order to set up your tracking domains, please document your list of domains, your account name, and your Bitly username, then send them to your Account Manager or in a request using the link below.

Auto-branding is the ability to automatically brand links created of your content with your custom domain.

When Auto-Branding is enabled, your links will maintain your custom domain even when being shared outside of your organization.

You can activate the auto-branding of links outside your Bitly account by emailing a list of domains you wish to add under your account to your Account Manager.

Keyboard Shortcuts

When navigating through the Bitlinks section in the dashboard, try these keyboard shortcuts to get what you need done, in fewer clicks:

b — Create Link

e — Edit Link

s — Share Link

f — Move cursor to shorten bar

Shift + A — Archive

Arrows — Quickly navigate through links

Give these keyboard shortcuts a try and you’ll be sure to save some time!

Source (


Is your company in need of help? MV3 Marketing Agency has numerous Marketing experts ready to assist you. Contact MV3 Marketing to jump-start your business.

« Back to Glossary Index